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Myths About Elder Abuse

Myths About Elder Abuse


There are the facts, and then there are the myths, about elder abuse in San Diego. We think it is so important to have access to the facts and risks surrounding nursing homes and elder abuse in California – especially if you have an elderly loved one who may soon need care from one of these facilities.

Here are a few of the most common myths about elder abuse, followed by the actual detailed facts you need to know, so you can identify possible signs of abuse before you decide on a potential nursing home for your loved one.

Myth: Elder Abuse is Less Likely to Happen in Expensive Nursing Homes Without a History of Abuse

We know this is not reassuring news, but, the fact is, nursing home abuse can happen no matter the cost of living at that particular facility that carries an impressive reputation. 

And, even if there is no repeat history of abuse in the nursing home you are considering, it does not mean that there is no risk of abuse happening in the future or that it has not happened in the past. Many elder abuse incidents in San Diego go unreported, which could mean why there is no history.

Myth: Elder Abuse is Not Common

Actually, it is all too common. According to a 2010 National Elder Mistreatment Study, 1 in 10 elder adults is abused in the United States. 

Experts feel one of the main roots of the misconception that elder abuse is not a widespread problem is ageism. Younger relatives of nursing home residents may assume their elder loved ones are depressed or have an increased risk of falls because of their age, or not communicating like usual or losing weight because they are still recovering from an illness. But that could be further from the truth. 

Myth: Physical Signs of Elder Abuse Will Be Obvious 

Just because signs of abuse of their elderly loved one are not obvious does not mean that family members will notice and pick up on those signs, like random cuts, marks, or bruises. Some physical abuse does not even actually leave a mark. 

Then there are the other forms of elder abuse, emotional or sexual, hidden from view or harder to detect because they may be confused with signs of dementia. 

Myth: Elders Will Tell You if They Have Been Abused

Unfortunately,  If your senior loved one does not report any abuse to you, it does not mean that the abuse did not happen. In fact, like many victims of abuse, elders are embarrassed that the abuse happened, blame themselves, or are scared of the culprit of the abuse.

For those victims of elder abuse with dementia, it could add another more difficult layer in communication because they may not have the mental capacity to report the abuse incident.

Contact a San Diego Elder Abuse Attorney

If you feel your elderly loved one is showing signs of abuse, their safety and protection are a priority. Contact Joel Bryant, one of the best nursing home abuse attorneys in San Diego, for a consultation to discuss the next best step or option for your situation.